RSS

Category Archives: Trek

Cycling to Mulund – Yogi Hills trek.

I saw two movies yesterday, back to back. The Secret life of Walter Mitty and The Wolf of Wall Street. These are two opposite movies. The latter one was a bit stretched is what I felt. But, whatever, after spending almost 6 hours at the theatre, I wanted to go to a calm place. To sit. Silent.

So we, me and Eishany, decided to trek to Yogi Hills, Mulund.

 

Screenshot from 2014-01-09 16:07:46

We started cycling from Thane to Cypress at 7am, which is short and sweet 6.5 kms ride.

I met my grandpa at the start of Yogi hills. Boy he is fit at 65!

IMG-20140109-WA0007There was a lot of smog this morning.

There are three phases to this hill. We reached and waited at the second phase for a breather. Weren’t we the luckiest people, we got to see the White Sun! The moment justified this scene from the movie The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.

Walter : When are you going to click that photo?
Sean : *long pause* Sometimes I don’t. Sometimes when the moment is perfect, I don’t like distraction of the camera.

well of course, me being Walter and Eishany being Sean, here.

1525061_617653728284626_1984331841_nSo we were passing through this forest patch,

Me : Hey, you want to know a fun-fact about this place?
Eishany : (all enthusiastic) Yeah temme!
Me : Leopard killed a guy at this place a few years ago! Almost every year leopards are spotted around this place.

No wonder people stop hanging around with me.

1551704_617652604951405_1268323419_nThis is the view from the top. You can see Tulsi lake on the other side.

Now, there are two diversions. One route will take you through the forest to the other side and the other one will take you back from where you started. Take the second route if you don’t want to make it to the newspaper headlines, with leopards mentioned in the same sentence.

mulund yogi hills trek 11On the way down, there is Taramati Temple.

mulund yogi hills trek 16

So that wraps up the Yogi hills trek. It should take one almost 30 minutes to reach to the top. Have fun!

Cheers!

 
2 Comments

Posted by on January 9, 2014 in Trek

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

In the arms of Sahyadris.

Kalsubai | Kulang | Mandan | Alang | Ratangad | Amruteshwar.

1510503_779103805436948_976597582_n

___

On our way cycling to Yeur, a friend told me about this trek to Sahyadris. I was excited but skeptical of my parents allowing me to go for the trek. Against all odds, I got a “Yes”.

We went to Kasara on 24th Dec 2013, midnight. Took a cab (okay let’s say it was a cab) to Igatpuri and reached Bari village by 4am. We had Chai and Poha, and waited for sunrise.

Bari_village

This is the house, at Bari village, where all of us, strangers if I must say, met for the first time. Little did we know about the bonds that we were going to make in next few days!

day1advice

Sir, or Vitthal Kaka as we call him, will tell us, everyday, about activity of that day – what fort are we going to see, which route are we going to take and what should be out approximate timing.

We started climbing Kalsubai Peak, the highest peak (1646 meters) in the Sahyadri Range.

kalsubai_halt1

This was out first halt, at a Hanuman temple, while climbing Kalsubai.

Rahul Daa sang folk songs for us at almost every halt. Boy is he blessed with an amazing voice! All the weariness, owing to the climbing and trekking, would just vanish listening to those songs. Poetry to ears!

kalsubai_templeThis is the Kalsubai temple, at the peak. During the Navratri period, for all nine days, special poojas are carried out and idol is fully decorated. Special Mela (fair) is organized for Navratri.

It took us almost 4 hours to climb Kalsubai Peak. We climbed down the peak and came to Ambewadi, with lungs full of unadulterated air, and mind, which was in the real sense of the word, blown!

I had dinner and went to the roof-top of that brick-walled house. I could see stars. I don’t remember the last time when I lay down on floor and looked at stars, shining bright, like diamonds in the sky.

This was day one.

___

ambewadi

Next day, all of us woke up fresh! Packed our rucksacks, and had Chai and Poha. Mornings were awesome. Bah! Whole days were awesome!

day2advice

Hearing those orders from Kaka, well more of encouraging words and hardly any orders, we started from Ambewadi to climb Kulang. Climbing Kulang on the second day was a bit easier for me, maybe because by now I was comfortable carrying the rucksack while climbing.

rucksack

I was so comfortable carrying the rucksack by now that I did not mind buckling up those extra ropes, you see that smile!

kulang_almost

kulang_entrance2

This is the entrance to Kulang Gad.

kulang_bathThis is the place where we took a bath, at Kulang. Believe you me, if you haven’t had such a bath, you don’t know what a bath is!

Okay, you don’t agree? Have a look at this! 😀

kulang_bath1Okay, so after the HIM SAHYADRI TREKKERS authorities see this picture, I will be officially banned from attending any more treks.

But now do you agree? Good.

Moving on.

Later that evening we were enjoying the sunset at Kulang. Talking, playing, laughing.

kulang_happymomentPeople, watch the sun, set! What colors!

sunset

kulang_sunset_guys

shekutiWe spent the night at a cave.

This was day 2.

____

1526608_644911512237607_856866931_n

We started the third day with the first ray of light.

942176_10202127163528334_1996869281_n

kulang_byebyeBye bye Kulang! We started off to Mandan and Alang Gad.

malang_midwayWe were running late by almost two hours. But, who cares when you are having the time of your life!

1st_rockclimbingWe reached a place from where Alang Gad was just 50 meters. But for that we had to cover 2 patches of rock climbing. First patch was almost 20 meters. We (25 of us) did that in an hour, but it was 6:30pm already. Covering one more patch (bigger than the last one) before the sun sets seemed difficult. We decided to stay in a cave and take another route the next day.

behnedo_momentThese were the eyes which made me compose Behne Do in that cave at Sahyadris.

behnedoAnd, I started!

The day ended playing Antakshari in cave! Yo! 😀

We started the next day taking a different route to Alang Gad.

alang_midway1

alang_midway2Thing I learned.

You can sit on the rocks and climb down, but, don’t do that. Trust your legs and your balance. Initially it will seem difficult, but you will develop that confidence. You will learn how to walk on mountains.

alang_midwayYea, big surprise, we all are posers.

This was at the base of Alang Gad.

alang_top1Top of Alang Gad is a plateau with a bastion and a few water tanks.

alang_top2Alang Gad. Check!

We headed to Samrad village that evening.

samrad_midwayforest

samradvillageThe day ended.

____

Mornings are awesome in villages.

balance_bookYou cannot balance a single book on your head and walk properly, and look at these girls. She said she walks 10kms one way, everyday, for this much water. Stop cribbing that you have a tough life.

village_girlShe was so engrossed in drawing that she did not care to pose for the Shehri Babu with a camera. She was happy coloring that Rangoli with her sketch-pen.

yoYoAnd we taught Jay Veeru to Yo! 😀

marchtoratangadAfter all this, we started marching to Ratangad.

not_aloneAnd this time, we were not alone!

day5adviceAs per the tradition, we were given all the instructions. At the back of our mind, all of us knew this was the last day. Mixed feelings!

sandesh_merinazarSandesh went all like “Meri nazar tum dekho toh yaar nazar aayee..” 😛

ratangad_entranceThis was the entrance of Ratangad.

It has a natural rock peak with a cavity in it at the top which is called ‘Nedhe’ or ‘Eye of the Needle’. The fort has four gates Ganesh, Hanuman, Konkan and Trimbak. The base village Ratanwadi has an Amruteshwar temple which is famous for its carvings. The fort is origin for the river Pravara/Amrutvahini. 

viewfrom_ratangadView from Ratangad.

ban_sulakaBan Sulaka, the toughest rock to climb at Sahyadris.

the_enlightened_one“SuperCop” Sunil Kadam turned into “The Enlightened One” at Ratangad! 😀

800px-Amriteshwar_temple

On the foothills of Ratangad, is Amruteshwar temple.

After all of that, we came back to Samrad village, had lunch and left for Mumbai.

5 days of awesomeness ended. “Strangers” turned into bunch of buddies. A trek, my first trek, was amazing.

A lot of treks lined up now. 😉

tindal_effect

 

Photo courtesy

Kunal Mestry

Sandesh Bhandare

Rahul Joshi

 
5 Comments

Posted by on January 6, 2014 in Trek